Sunday, May 3, 2009


I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth. 3 John 1:4

Why do Latter-Day Saints place such a high value on children and families?

We are each literally children of God and we lived with him before we were born on this earth. As spirit sons and daughters of God, we progressed as far as we could without a body and the experiences that we would have in mortality. We needed to leave God's presence for a time and come to earth. Mortality is required of each of God's children who wish to obtain the blessings that he has in store for them.

As part of our Heavenly Father's Plan, he has placed us in
families where we can be loved and nurtured and he has promised us that those precious family relationships can continue forever.

The first commandment that God gave to Adam and Eve was to multiply replenish the earth. We believe that that commandment is still in force. In bearing children we provide the opportunity for our Heavenly Father's children to gain a body and experience mortality.

"The expression of our procreative powers is pleasing to God, but he has commanded that this be confined within the relationship of marriage. President Spencer W. Kimball taught that “in the context of lawful marriage, the intimacy of sexual relations is right and divinely approved. There is nothing unholy or degrading about sexuality in itself, for by that means men and women join in a process of creation and in an expression of love.” Oaks

Latter-Day Saints are counseled to have children and to counsel with the Lord in making their decisions. An official statement from the church reads: "Children are one of the greatest blessings in life, and their birth into loving and nurturing families is central to God’s purposes for humanity. When husband and wife are physically able, they have the privilege and responsibility to bring children into the world and to nurture them. The decision of how many children to have and when to have them is a private matter for the husband and wife." That is it. There are no quotas or requirements, or prohibitions on birth control. As with most direction we receive in the church, we are taught what God expects of us and why, then are left to govern ourselves.

Each of my children is a beloved child of God. There were his first. He has given me the opportunity to raise them and to experience the love and joy that they bring. I love to look into their eyes and think about how recently they were in their Heavenly Father's presence. I learn so much from my children and feel blessed and privileged to have them in my home. It is not easy. Nothing worth doing is. It takes work and sacrifice, humility, faith, and patience to teach and care for children, but I can think of no greater joy.

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